Saturday, August 25, 2012

Identity, Hay in Your Bra, and Wrestling, Seriously.

Blogging is weird. To begin, the word itself is either like a sound a swamp creature would make, or maybe something a singer or wrestler would say while rolling their shoulders and flopping their arms around, you know, to warm up. BLOG BLOG BLOG BLOG BLOG BLOG. (Fun fact: the word BLOG is a portmanteau of “web log”. Look it up. And did you know Twitter is considered “microblogging”? I don’t, cuz Twitter is stupid. Cuz I like to judge things I’ve never tried.)

When did blogging get so big, and why do people give a crap about reading other peoples’ crap? Is it escapist? Voyeuristic? Sympathetic? Obviously it depends on the subject of the blog, but why do we all think we are all worthy of “followers”? That’s just creepy. And it’s just public journaling. Why do we want others to read our stuff? Since reality shows took over the world and everyone thinks they can be a celebrity for doing nothing special whatsoever? I think yes. Mystery solved. You’re welcome. Am I famous yet?

Don’t you want to read about how there is nothing worse in this universe than getting hay in your bra? Because THAT’S indubitably the most pressing issue facing the world today. Seriously. No matter how I try or what approach I employ in throwing it over the fence, hay pieces and particulates manage to lodge themselves in the itchiest of places and NEVER leave. Fin.

Whatever. It’s naptime again, and once again it’s that time of day for pondering the difficult and deep questions of life, such as: coffee or beer? Should I take a shower or a nap? Apparently neither, cuz blogging is currently what’s happening. My excuse is that it’s easier to get up from the computer to scold wayward three-year-old boys—who are supposed to be napping but instead are wrestling—than it is to get out of the shower or up from a nap.

I don’t know what I was talking about last time when I said it would take some time to collect material for another lengthy blog. Who am I kidding? Of course I can come up with copious material at every moment. That last post was based on a single day. For reals, yo. And so far this one is about nothing, and is already long. I forgot that I liked to write, and my fingers forgot how to type anything longer than one sentence without cramping up.

But in the interest of expanding on my “INTRO”, which was severely lacking in any actual information due to my being distracted by decorative throw pillows, I am amassing a few of my favorite snippets from my facebook page, now that I am using a format intended for rants longer than one sentence. To begin, one of my favorite episodes of crazy… 

1. Boy poops on potty. There is lots of high-fiving and he gets a cookie.
2. Meanwhile, girl poops in diaper. Gets changed.
3. Boy poops in underpants. Gross. Gets cleaned up but stays naked.
4. Meanwhile, girl dumps bowl of dog water all over kitchen floor.
5. Mom cleans floor. Starts some laundry.
6. Meanwhile, boy poops on carpet on the way to the potty.
7. Dog eats floor poop. Boy screams angrily.
8. Boy poops on potty a little more. Receives half-hearted congratulations.
9. Mom cleans smudge on floor left by dog; yells at dog but not really because she's grateful he helped clean the poo.
10. Mom puts kids down for nap.
11. Mom drinks.

I have to admit I am grateful that my giant doofus mutt, Bruce (a very handsome but very block-headed brindled cross of Bullmastiff and German Shepherd), likes to eat all things vile. It really helps me not to vomit while I am cleaning up huge piles of, well, vomit. Or in this case, poop. At least I am just left with the smudge. Dirt has since abandoned #2 on the potty, and saves it up until he’s asleep to go in his diaper. THAT is a fun midnight pastime, especially since HE is just as unhappy about it as I am. Except right this moment, he and his cousin are side-by-side on the training potty and big potty, allegedly going poop. I think it’s a tactic to avoid the nap that they are obviously never going to take, since the only thing they are producing is noise that is going to wake up my sleeping 2-year-old precious angel daughter Tuesday, who naps like a champ.

Is being a stay-at-home mom making a comeback in society? Like breastfeeding, when women’s libbers once thought boobies were icky and it was demeaning to put them to their intended use, but now all the hippies proudly breastfeed their eight-year-olds? In public? I think working moms and SAHMs are jealous of each other, just like in women’s MMA (or ultimate fighting? I don’t know, I’ve only seen Mixed Martial Arts, once, last night, and one of the matches was a girl fight), when the skanky ring girls who strut around in their undies carrying signs at wrestling matches and the actual female wrestlers must be jealous of each other. Would that make the skanks the SAHMs and the working moms the wrestlers? I don’t know how I feel about that.

Being home with the kids is a constant dichotomy. I am so busy but so bored. I am so grateful but feel trapped. And HOW can such small beings inspire SOOOOOOO much love AND SOOOO much rage?? Cookies and beer? Yes please! That is the salvation of naptime (and baked goods, and alcoholic beverages), which I am too scared to admit might be over for my 3-year-old, who seldom naps anymore. Tragedy. Seriously. But seriously, raising kids is seriously one of the most meaningful jobs, like, seriously. But also the hardest, and the easiest, and the best, and the worst. For serious. I am so proud of my kids but embarrassed of what I “do” (or don’t do). Vanity? Societal pressure?

In any case, I now need to quote my oh-so wise sister-in-law: “Honestly, being a decent parent is an exhausting full time job. Give yourself a break from the guilt. The boredom is a bigger issue to conquer - how to do what you are doing, which is the most important job on the planet, without feeling like your talent and intelligence are draining out your ears in the process. You do need to find a way to not lose yourself in the process.”

ALTHOUGH, I will say, having gone to the grocery store in a kinna uppity area the other day (a weekday), lots of the women presumed to be housewives were icky. Skanky-wearing-heels-and-lipstick-to-the-grocery-store-on-a-Tuesday icky. Or maybe I’m the icky one for wearing my capri cargo pants with a hole in the back of the left leg from climbing a fence and purple oil paint on the front pocket and pizza grease on the front right thigh…in public…with the way-too-worn-out flipflops. Is icky in the eye of the beholder?

Whenever I am driving north on I-25, by myself (which almost NEVER happens—the by myself part), I fantasize about not stopping, and going to Wyoming, and then Montana, and then Canada, and still further North to Alaska (that’s a song, you know…and a movie…which came first?). I used to love the 7-hour drive in college through the vast nothing of Wyoming; I was almost always a little sad when I finally reached my destination. Except that my butt was numb.

Identity is weird for me right now. I used to be good at stuff. I felt like someone. El oh el. The real world—beyond school—especially with the addition of offspring, will do a number on you. Now I drive a minivan, clean up poop and pee from four different species, and say things like “Stop touching your weiner” and “Take a big dinosaur bite” and “Yes, that is a very, very silly tower”. 

Awhile back, when I still had a “real” job (waitressing, er—serving), I was driving to work with the windows down, blasting some classic rock: "Low Rider" and "Cheap Sunglasses"...feeling a little ironic and more than a little badass, having borrowed Dooley's $5 aviators, I then realized I was driving a minivan. Then "Bittersweet Surrender" came on as a sleek red sportscar full of raucous teenagers sped by. (Okay it was a white saturn coupe and an old lady but still.) Reality check. Seriously.

The other night I was driving north at 11pm, alone, listening to a really pretty but melancholy song by Eddie Vedder about the greed and materialism of society. (Maybe it was called “Society”? Titles can be tricky.) I think it was released with the movie “Into the Wild”, which is based on a book, which is based on a sad, and strangely inspiring true story about a guy who disappears in the Alaskan wilderness. I’m sure you’re familiar. It made me wistful for a sort of Buddhist non-attachment and simplicity and solitude, but then I remembered how I rather enjoy electricity, and although my family drives me crazy, I could never be non-attached to them. I would get to Canada, or Alaska, and have to turn right around cuz I’d be missing everyone so bad.

At the grocery store (yes, we’re back to that), if I’m there with my lovable hooligans, I am soooo envious of the childless people shopping with ease, unencumbered by the big-ass car-cart that doesn’t steer worth a crap and little screamers who think the grocery store is a free-for-all. But if I’m there as alone, I am jealous of the people who have their adorable little minions with them. You just can’t win. As soon as you’re free of them, you miss them.

But apparently I don’t get to be free of them at all today, so I do not miss them. At. All. S-e-r-i-o-u-s-l-y. In conclusion, I was wondering, would you rather be a ring girl or a lady wrestler? Why?

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Dirt Floods the Basement, and other Normal Day-to-Day Occurances

7:30am: My 3 1/2-year-old boy, Dirt, trots in carrying his pillow and gets in bed with me. Only today he isn't going to go back to sleep like a nice cuddly little boy who lets his mommy sleep in. He smiles and prods my eyelids open, repeatedly. I feign sleep, hoping he'll leave me alone and maybe fall asleep again himself. Then he starts punching me in the arm and yelling, gleefully, for me to "Wake up right now! You gotta wake up, Mama!" (He probably learned this tactic from the many, many times he's seen me trying to rouse his daddy. The punching and yelling, that is.)

This goes on for a good 15 minutes before he gives up and leaves. Victory! Except then he comes back, wearing his cowboy boots (with the gym shorts and t-shirt pjs), and announces to me—although for all he knows I am asleep—that he is going outside. I don't care.
 He has roused the household. My door is now open for a pack of excited dogs and a very loudly purring kitten to repeat Dirt's attempts at getting me up. They are slightly more productive, but only slightly. Then I hear my 2-year-old's loud, demanding, sing-song voice from her room down the hall: "MaaaMAAAAAAA! MAAAAMAAAAAA!" She is persistent. DAMN.

 I heave myself up and peel my eyes open. When I open Tuesday's door, she gasps with excitement and then declares to me, while pointing to her diaper, that she has a "tiny poopoo". It is not tiny. When she is clean and “fresh?” (Tuesday pronounces everything inquisitively), I hold her over my head and toss her, and something snaps in my neck. Now I can’t turn.

My kitchen sink is full of last night’s dishes. I have been trying to give up my OCD need to do dishes right away, on occasion, but I loathe waking up to a messy kitchen. The dishwasher is full of clean dishes to be unloaded, and the countertop is icky. The flies love it and I hate them. HOW do they all get in here? Both the washer and the dryer are full of laundry to be processed. The trash is full and needs to be taken out. My bare feet have floor debris sticking to them. The beasts all need to be fed—including children, dogs, cat, and horses. But first: coffee.

I take some allergy medicine because I am super duper sneezy, and then the  ibuprofen looks pretty good, considering my lovely new pinched nerve, and then I see my vitamins, which I never remember to take, so I have a nice time popping pills, and then decide to eat a loaf of banana bread with a pound of butter on it, because, you know, you can’t take pills on an empty stomach, and then, and then, I decided this sentence was plenty long and contained just enough commas.

The aforementioned chores were completed around 10, during which time the kids were sorta-kinna watching Bambi II, which I put on while they had their breakfast. I end up watching their movies more than they do, and get so choked up that I can barely speak. At cartoons. The kids are starting to play together much nicer; I only had to freak out at Luke for being mean to Tuesday a time or two. Later I let Dirt go back outside to play, but I am both too lazy and too busy to accompany Tuesday outside, so she is forced to stay in the house with me while I kill flies and continue doing chores, which present themselves one after the other after the other (both chores and flies). She is mad about it and keeps pleading with me about shoes.

Around 10:30 Dooley calls and says he was denied the use of his debit card on a $1.32 purchase and requests that I investigate. Evidently the teller was full of crap when she said yesterday’s deposit would post by this morning. Stupid Wells Fargo. How I hate you. I call to complain but it doesn’t do any good. We are charged overdraft fees and I am mad and vow to quit banking at WF, again, but I won’t, yet, because their online bill pay is so darn convenient. So I pay the cash advance fees and transfer more money from my credit card, which I HAD paid off. Ugh. Soon we’ll be ballin’, though. In theory. Once checks from Dooley’s new job get more regular and we catch up on stuff. Riiiigggghhht.

Dirt is back in the house now, and he tells me the floor is really gross, and with his very serious face nodding slowly, he tells me we need to vacuum. COME ON!!! I had just gotten to rest, literally JUST flopped down on the couch to breathe while watching the special features on the Bambi II disc for the second time (because it is equipped with “fastplay” and just keeps cycling). I am learning how to draw Thumper. Then he actually brings out the vacuum and threatens to do it himself, the cord poised near the outlet. So I get up and vacuum. It DID need it. But then the crap vacuum shorts out half way through and I had to finish an hour later.

Soon it is lunchtime. Wait. I skipped a part. Sometime after breakfast the lovable monsters demand canned peaches. Dirt got me the can opener and everything. As soon as I have them plated and served, I get “No thank you I don’t want that.” (At least it was polite.) So I force them to eat most of the peaches, angrily reminding them that THEY WANTED THE DAMN PEACHES IN THE FIRST PLACE.

The other part I skipped was the flood. Maybe around 9am? Dirt was being such a nice, big boy entertaining himself outside and not bugging me—or so I thought—and he decides our walkout basement needs to be watered. Or washed? Luckily the thing is unfinished concrete, but he dragged the hose in and pumped in a pretty good amount of water before I got twitchy and went to check on him. Upon making the discovery that the front corner of the basement was semi-flooded, I yelled “NONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONO!!!!”, and Dirt, who is usually unperturbed by our reprimands, starts sobbing and runs away. Then I feel bad, but clearly he knew what he was doing was, indeed, naughty. I find him back inside watching Bambi II, curled up on the couch, milking it. He says he’s cold. It’s 80 degrees out and pretty warm inside, despite the ever-present clamor of the swamp cooler. Whatever. So I get him all nicely situated on the couch with his pillow and blanket, and gently remind him not to water the basement. Why? Um, because. Because…the basement is not thirsty?

So now it’s lunchtime. Tuesday gets Kix cereal and Dirt gets leftover noodles…and peaches. While they eat, I read an unhelpful article about discipline in a copy of Parenting magazine (from three years ago—for some reason I still have it from the time all the baby/kid companies find out when you have a baby and furiously peddle their wares at you). I am thrilled when they go down for nap with very minimal arguments a little bit later.

It is 1:30pm and I have a moment to myself. I freaking love naptime. I thought I had a moment to myself last night when I escaped for a shower (literally ESCAPED…I ducked out and ran to the bathroom at a moment when Dooley had both kids), but a second later both kids were banging down the door: “What are you doing, Mama?!” I yell for Dooley and he retrieves them while I shower, but the moment I turn the water off, I overhear him saying, “Go get Mama!” I could kill him. Seriously, dude? FIVE minutes? That’s all I get? I storm out dripping wet in my towel and give him a cheerful earful. Ha. Cheerful earful. I am saved by a phone call from my old college roommate and I am *allowed* some privacy for the phone call. I literally lock the bedroom door.

So yay naptime. It has currently ended at this moment. I have enjoyed the purging of my mind via this new blog, but now the darlings are awake, and Dooley will be home soon. I turned on “Silly Songs” to momentarily appease them, and am listening to a song about a purple cow who thinks she is a chicken, all by myself, because they left. And now they want to watch Dragon Movie (How to Train Your Dragon) for the hundred billionth time. Fine. I still can't turn my head all the way.

Gotta go. I hope you have enjoyed my run-on sentences and constant changing from present to past tense.
Stay tuned for riveting tales of pillows. Although it might be a long time before I have enough material built up in my brain for rants of this magnitude.


How do your children/dogs wake you up? Do you watch the same movie over and over and over and over? What evil deeds have your kids done when you thought they were behaving and suddenly it was quiet?

INTRO: pillows and phobias

Hi there. Sarah here.  A little background for the millions of strangers that will no doubt be captivated by my amazing life and addicted to pouring over my every word…

I love ellipses. Dot dot dot. (I also enjoy parenthesis.) I love decorative throw pillows, and I have a particular way I like them arranged, the maintenance of which is a full-time job, thanks to my husband, Dooley, our two small children, Dirt and Tuesday, and our three dogs, Dodie, Tigger, and Bruce. The cat smushes them but doesn’t mess with my arrangement too much (thank you for your consideration, Captain Hotdog, though I am still mad at you for peeing on the red ruffled one). The horses, Diesel and Mouse, respectfully keep their distance in their pen in the backyard, but I’m sure they would totally ruin my pillow display if given the chance.

We are a loud, messy family. I have memories of being a tidy, organized person but that has been slowly eroded away since meeting Dooley. Now I cling to organizing trifles like decorative pillows. The rest of our house, or at least the unseen bits of our house (i.e. drawers and closets), is a nightmare of epic proportions. Hello Hoarders. Most people have one junk drawer. I don’t have one organized drawer. Or closet. I also recall having a brain, but that, like my tidiness, has slowly evaporated since having kids.

I hate flies. With fire. They make me seriously crazy. SERIOUSLY. Like I stand in the middle of a room wielding the fly swatter with crazy eyes, waiting for one of the little bastards to land so I can destroy it. I only mention this cuz there is a giant one tempting fate by buzzing loudly all around me at this very moment.

I am a stay at home mom and daycare provider. I may or may not still be a waitress. I never ever ever ever ever ever EVER foresaw my involvement in any of these occupations. (Because I never really liked kids or people in general, duh.) I don’t really know just HOW I envisioned my life when I was younger, but some nonsensical guidance counselors encouraged me to get a fine art degree, so here I am. 

And it’s not at all that I’m not happy. Just crazy. I came across a website of phobias ( the other day and discovered that Lyssophobia is “a pathological fear of going insane”, hence the name of this blog. You will understand why if you have kids, or have ever met one. I also found these fun little nuggets, which I thought would make good names too (especially the last one):
Bogyphobia – fear of bogeys or the bogyman
Chronophobia—fear of time
Decideophobia—fear of making decisions
Geniophobia—fear of chins
Genuphobia—fear of knees
Kopophobia—fear of fatique
Mottephobia—fear of moths
Zemmiphobia—fear of the great mole rat

So...for the dialoging... How has your personality changed since being married or having kids? What idiosyncrasies have you held on to?

New Year New Me: Pony Progress

Today I thought I’d mix up my morning “internesting” ritual (coffee and computer time, usually comfortably nested on the couch); I brought ...